Issues of Interest

VAPE DETECTORS The Indian County School Board is considering installing vape detectors in school bathrooms. The sensors would be placed in bathrooms and can detect vape smoke.

HOME DNA TESTS Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis advised Floridians who may be using a direct-to-consumer DNA test to trace their ancestry that their privacy may be compromised. This was after a memo was sent by the U.S. Defense Department warning military members not to use them. 

FLORIDA GOP MOVE The chair of the Republican Party of Florida is considering vacating its headquarters at the George Bush Republican Center in Tallahassee. Senator Joe Gruters (R-Sarasota) has formed a committee to explore moving the state GOP operations center to a more populated area of the state.

NATIONAL CENSUS The Governor has appointed Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Nuñez to lead Florida’s 2020 Census Statewide Complete Count Committee. The committee is tasked with ensuring Florida’s count includes everyone. Projections indicate that the state may gain three additional congressional seats as a result of population increases. The state has come under fire from activists as it is one of twenty-four states that have not allocated state funds towards the census.

MANATEE DEATHS According to the Fish and Wildlife Commission, Florida boaters killed 129 manatees in 2019, setting a record. Lee and Brevard County reported the greatest number of deaths by boating. The leading cause of manatee death is natural causes related to its growing population and dwindling sea-grass growth.

EVERGLADES RESTORATION PROJECT The Old Tamiami Trail roadbed in Miami-Dade County will be removed to allow for a greater volume of water to flow south through the Everglades. The South Florida Water Management District approved the project last month, which is a component of the larger Central Everglades Planning Project. The 5.5 miles of old roadbed will no longer be an impediment to fresh water that historically flowed south helping to restore Everglades National Park and Florida Bay. The trail was originally built in the early 1900’s to connect Tampa and Miami.